Plano North October 2020

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Construction gets underway on $15million re training center The center will include several buildings where reghters can practice responding to real- life scenarios. (Rendering courtesy Plano Fire Department)

199th District Court Judge Angela Tucker JudgeAngelaTucker.com

468th District Court Judge Lindsey Wynne JudgeLindseyWynne.com

BY OLIVIA LUECKEMEYER

“We’ve tried to think of everything you can think of that would be a real-world scenario,” he said “It will be unlike any other re training center you’ve ever seen.” The need for the facility was precipitated not only by Plano’s growing population but also by evolving types of occupancies, Greif said. Sta formerly used the training center at Collin College in McKinney, but that option is no longer viable due to the time it takes reghters to get back to home base. “There is a reason why almost every city has its own re training center,” he said. “It would be great if you could share [this resource], but the reality is no one wants to be that far from their home and have that much diculty getting back.” An at-home training center will also make it easier for the depart- ment to maintain its Level 1 rating from the Insurance Services Oce, which determines property insur- ance costs, Greif said. Response times for emergencies are also expected to improve since sta will remain inside city limits rather than traveling to McKinney for training, he added. Above all, Greif said the training facility, which is expected to be up and running within 12 to 14 months, will equip reghters to handle any curve ball thrown their way. “You don’t want us pulling out a book when we get there trying to gure out what it is we are supposed to be doing or how we are going to aect that rescue,” he said. “We need to have that literally as muscle memory.”

The city of Plano broke ground on its new, state-of-the-art re training center Oct. 9. The $15 million center will be located at the northwest corner of McDermott and Robinson roads immediately south of the recently completed police department substation. Fireghters will use the facilities to practice responding to real-life scenarios, such as structure res, hazmat emergencies and rescue missions. “We have found ourselves doing things I never would have dreamed reghters would be doing when I got into this service back in the ’80s,” Plano Fire Department Chief Sam Greif told the Plano West Rotary Group at an Oct. 6 meeting. “These things happen, and we have to be prepared for them when they do.” Each level of a six-story tower will represent a dierent environment, such as a residential high-rise apartment, a corporate oce and a professional-grade kitchen, Greif said. Propane-powered res will be accompanied by articial smoke, he added. “It dissipates as soon as it hits the atmosphere, but when the windows are closed it gives us the occluded vision we need to simulate what we are going to be facing in a real-world situation,” he said. The tower will also house a base- ment and an elevator so reghters can train for extractions, he added. The model home built on the prop- erty will include dierent roof angles and internal oor plans that pose various challenges, Greif said.

366th District Court Judge Tom Nowak VotingforTom.com

469th District Court Judge Piper McCraw Piper4Judge.com

380th District Court Judge Ben Smith KeepJudgeSmith.com

470th District Court Judge Emily Miskel JudgeEmily.com

416th District Court Judge Andrea Thompson Andrea4Texas.com

471st District Court Judge Andrea Bouressa KeepJudgeBouressa.com

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